In a truly critical contest, the New York Islanders defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 4-1 on Tuesday night, putting the Flyers 7 points away from the Islanders, who now sit in in the 7th spot in the Eastern Conference. The loss snapped a seven-game winning streak at Nassau Coliseum.
After the Flyers committed an icing, took a timeout, and failed to get the puck deep when play continued, the Islanders rushed the puck up the other way. Colin McDonald found Michael Grabner streaking down the wing after a pick by Keith Aucoin. Grabner snapped it past starter Steve Mason to give the Islanders the 2-1 lead.
General Manager Paul Holmgren announced this afternoon that the Philadelphia Flyers have signed goaltender Steve Mason to a one-year extension worth $1.5 million. Mason was acquired in a deal with the Columbus Blue Jackets on April 3 for Michael Leighton and a 2015 third round pick.
The 24-year-old goaltender busted onto the NHL scene back in 2008. In his rookie season, he posted a 33-20-7 record with the Blue Jackets, posting ten shutouts, and owning an impressive .916 save percentage and a 2.29 goals against average.
The Flyers got their first look at Steve Mason, but it was under the circumstances they least wanted it to come under.
A second period melt down for starter Ilya Bryzgalov saw his night end abruptly. It also snapped the Flyers four-game winning streak with a 4-1 loss to the Jets, which also snapped Winnipeg's five-game skid.
The Flyers waltzed into the game three points out of a playoff spot. They were a point behind the Jets in the standings with two games in hand. They're now three points back and sit in 11th place currently with 10 games remaining.
Riding a four-game winning streak, the Flyers travel to The 'Peg where they take on a struggling Jets team. Winnipeg is losers of five straight, giving the Flyers a good opportunity to take advantage of their struggles and continue their march to the playoffs.
Playing the latter of a grueling back-to-back, the Flyers overcame a late surge by a good Toronto Maple Leafs team, holding on to win 5-3 Thursday night. It was their fourth straight win and earned them two huge points in the standings.
Sean Couturier had a fantastic game. He was all over the ice, notching a pair of assists and seemingly looked like he was always out there despite playing just over 13 minutes.
(Pictured: Kimmo Timonen and Sean Couturier take out Mikhail Grabovski in the 2nd period. AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Nathan Denette)
The agent of newly acquired goaltender Steve Mason, Anon Thun, expects the Flyers and the goaltender to come to agreement on a one-year contract extension shortly.
The extension will give Mason a chance to compete with now starter Ilya Bryzgalov for the top goalie spot. Mason was acquired from Columbus before the trade deadline for a 2015 3rd round pick and Michael Leighton
This was all speculation yesterday when Mason was acquired. With Bryzgalov boasting a massive contract it's rumored the Flyers could amnesty Bryzgalov's contract, freeing up a ton of money to get themsleves salary cap complient.